Blog Archive

Monday, December 2, 2013

Michigan Farm to School News



USDA Announces Projects Using Local Food to Address Hunger and Increase Access to Healthy Food
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced the National Institute of Food and Agriculture's Community Food Project (CFP) awards. These awards support organizations using local food to develop community-based solutions to address food insecurity and increase access to healthy food in low income communities.


PolicyLink and The Food Trust have issued a new report, Access to Healthy Food and Why It Matters: A Review of Research, that emphasizes the health and economic benefits of healthy food access. 


Offer More Healthy Foods, Kids Eat More Healthy Foods from the Huffington Post

A new Michigan State University study published in the journal Childhood Obesity found that when vending programs at schools and a la carte options are primarily or entirely healthy options, "middle school aged kids ate 26 percent more fruit, 14 percent more vegetables and 30 percent more whole grains over the course of a day."


Homegrown by Heroes Program Launches from the Huffington Post 

Soon to be a nationwide program, the Homegrown by Heroes branding campaign labels items grown by farmers who have, or are currently, serving in the military with red, white and blue labels.


The videos from the 2013 Michigan Junior Chef Competition are now available on the website. The goal of the 2013 Michigan Junior Chef Competition was to provide youth participants hands-on cooking experience and knowledge of healthy and local food choices. It was made up of two parts: a Recipe Contest and a Cook-off Competition. Recipes for the Recipe Contest had to include fresh, local and United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) foods and be practical and easy for school food service operations to offer as part of their meal programs. The top eight teams from the Recipe Contest were invited to prepare their meals on-site at the Cook-off Competition at Michigan State University on May 9th, 2013. The competition is sponsored and hosted by the Michigan Team Nutrition, Michigan Department of Education, the MSU Center for Regional Food Systems and United Dairy Industries of Michigan.


Fresh, Local Foods Well Received by Students in Dexter Schools

See the attached press release about Dexter Community Schools’ Farm to School Month efforts, including bringing local kale into the school meals program!


Chicago Public Schools’ Eat What You Grow program is piloting a food safety manual that can serve as a model for other schools to make the link between the school garden and the school cafeteria.


Oregon Farm to School Act Could Bring More Local Food to Eugene Schools from the Eugene Daily News

The Farm to School Act “would use grant money to reimburse school districts up to 15 cents per meal for food produced or processed in Oregon.”





Let’s Move Salad Bars to Schools has come to the Midwest! Let's Move Salad Bars to MIDWEST Schools is a special campaign of the United Fresh Foundation, under the umbrella of the national Let's Move Salad Bars to Schools (LMSB2S) initiative. The goal of Let's Move Salad Bars to MIDWEST Schools is to increase children’s fruit and vegetable consumption by donating salad bars to schools in IL, IN, MI, MN, OH and WI. School salad bars are a great way to incorporate local food products into school meals, meet the nutrition standards and help kids develop healthier eating habits. See the attached flyer and visit to complete an application for free salad bar equipment. For information about Lets Move Salad Bars to MIDWEST Schools, contact Andrew Marshall at (202) 303-3407, or Diane Golzynski at Michigan Department of Education at (517) 373-3383,


Food Network is seeking Teens for Chopped Auditions
Food Network's show Chopped is currently seeking passionate teen cooks (ages around 12-16) from the New York/Northeast, Charleston, Portland, OR and Chicago areas to compete on a future teen tournament special! For more information and to apply, please visit the Chopped auditions website.


2014 Youth Garden Grant

Grant Application Deadline: December 6, 2013

Since 1982, National Gardening Association has provided the Youth Garden Grant to over 5,000 schools, nonprofits, and youth programs across the United States.


Lowe's Charitable and Education Foundation Announces 2014 Toolbox for Education Grant Program

Grants of up to $5,000 will be awarded in support of facility improvement projects that have a permanent impact on a K-12 school community.

Deadline: February 14, 2014

Posted: November 7, 2013


Applications open for the 2014 Organic Farmer Training Program at the MSU Student Organic Farm

This training program provides nine months of intensive instruction focusing on year-round organic farming production, including vegetables, livestock, flowers, fruits and herbs, for local markets. Participants manage all aspects of a 15-acre organic farm, including passive solar greenhouses. Merit and need-based scholarships are available. Visit the MSU SOF website for a full program description and application.


USDA Value Added Producer Grant Opportunity now open! Approximately $10.5 million is available through this grant opportunity to help agricultural producers participate in value-added activities. Matching funds are required. Find more information here. Grant proposals are due February 24, 2014.





EdWeb Webinar - Tools to Create Social Change Through Youth Farming and Gardening 
Tuesday, January 7, 2014 – 4pm / Eastern Time

Presented by: Greg Gale, Associate Director of Programs, VISIONS and Training Consultant, The Food Project with Johanna Gilligan, Founder and Executive Director, Grow Dat Youth Farm


Great Lakes Fruit, Vegetable and Farm Market Expo

December 10 – 12th, 2013

DeVos Center, Grand Rapids, MI

Register and find more info here.

This year, the conference program features a Farm to Institution Marketing Panel Discussion brought to you by the Ecology Center and MSU Extension on Wednesday, December 11th at 1 pm!


2014 National Food Hub Conference: Building Capacity for Healthy Regional Food Systems

Hosted by the National Good Food Network

March 26-28, 2014 in Raleigh, North Carolina

Requests for session proposals, sponsorship and registration information is available here.


National Farm to Cafeteria Conference: Powering Up

April 15 – 18th

Austin, TX



Colleen Matts

Farm to Institution Specialist | Michigan Lead for National Farm to School Network

Center for Regional Food Systems | Michigan State University

480 Wilson Rd | Rm 303 Natural Resources Building | East Lansing, MI 48824

(p) 517.432.0310 |


No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.